Tooth Extraction in Virginia Beach, VA

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Tooth Extraction

Maintaining good oral health is important to keep the mouth working well, and because of that, sometimes tooth extraction is necessary. When a tooth becomes so riddled with decay that it is no longer salvageable, tooth extraction is the recommended course of action to prevent this decay from spreading to other teeth.

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Reasons to Have a Tooth Removed

Our doctors will do everything they can to preserve the teeth in a patient’s mouth. That being said, sometimes, there is just no way to save a tooth. The following are some of the most common reasons for tooth extraction:

  • Severe tooth decay that has reached the center of the tooth. If a root canal cannot help clear away the infection, extraction may be necessary
  • Gum disease, also known as gingivitis, which causes the gums to shrink and become infected
  • Impaction, which is when the tooth has not been able to fully emerge from the gums
  • Overcrowding
  • Trauma or accident, which can damage to the tooth to the point that it is no longer salvageable

Treatment Process


The first step in the process is to numb the tooth, bone, and gum tissue with a local anesthetic so that the patient won’t feel any pain or discomfort. While patients won’t be able to feel the tooth being removed, they may feel some pressure as our doctors push and pull on the tooth.


Next, our doctors will use a variety of tools to help the extraction go smoothly. These might include extraction forceps, which are like a set of pliers that are used to grab the tooth and pull it out, and dental elevators, which resemble a narrow screwdriver and are used to wedge under the gums to force the tooth out.

After the Procedure

Once the tooth is gone, our doctors will clean out the empty socket to remove any infected tissue and help the area heal better. They’ll also rinse the area with a saline solution to clean out tooth or bone fragments. If any bits of bone are sticking out, they’ll file these down so they won’t cause future problems. Finally, if the wound is large, they’ll use stitches to close it up and then place gauze over the extraction site.

Recovery Instructions

After the tooth extraction, Virginia Beach and Chesapeake patients can expect a bit of soreness. This can usually be controlled with over-the-counter pain medication. There may also be a fair bit of bleeding, but this can be controlled by applying pressure to the site with gauze.

Dry socket is a painful condition where the blood clot in the socket is dislodged. To keep the blood clot in place, patients will need to stick to a soft or liquid foods diet for the first couple of days after the procedure. They also can’t smoke or drink from a straw, as this increases the risk of dry socket.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is The Aftercare For A Tooth Extraction?

After the extraction, your oral surgeon will provide you with specific guidelines to promote healing. One essential step is to gently bite down on gauze placed over the extraction site to control bleeding. Ice packs wrapped in a cloth can effectively reduce swelling when placed on the outside of your cheek. Just make sure to remove the ice pack every 10-15 minutes. It's also crucial to take any prescribed medication or over-the-counter pain relievers as directed to manage discomfort. While maintaining oral hygiene, rinse your mouth with warm saltwater multiple times a day to keep the extraction area clean.

During the recovery period, stick to a soft food diet initially, then gradually reintroduce solid foods as recommended by your oral surgeon. Steer clear of hot or spicy foods, as they may irritate the extraction site. It’s also important to avoid activities that could impact your healing journey, such as smoking, using a straw, or engaging in strenuous activities.

After the extraction procedure, your oral surgeon will schedule a follow-up appointment to monitor your healing progress and remove any stitches if necessary. If you experience severe pain, excessive bleeding, or any other concerns during your recovery, don't hesitate to contact us for guidance.

How Painful Is A Tooth Extraction?

The level of pain experienced during a tooth extraction can vary depending on several factors, such as the complexity of the extraction, the patient's pain tolerance, and the use of anesthesia or sedation. However, it's important to note that modern dental techniques and anesthesia options have significantly reduced the discomfort associated with tooth extractions.

Before the procedure, your oral surgeon will thoroughly numb the extraction site using a local anesthetic, ensuring that you won't feel any pain during the extraction itself. They may also offer additional sedation options, such as nitrous oxide or IV sedation, to help you relax and minimize any anxiety or discomfort you may feel.

After the extraction, it's normal to experience some soreness and discomfort, especially as the anesthesia wears off. However, your oral surgeon will provide you with instructions on managing any pain or swelling. This may include prescribing pain medication or recommending over-the-counter pain relievers. Following these instructions and taking any prescribed medication as directed will help minimize any discomfort and promote a smoother recovery.

How Long Does It Take To Recover From A Tooth Extraction?

Recovering from a tooth extraction can vary from person to person, but on average, it takes about 2 weeks to fully heal. Immediately after the procedure, you may experience some swelling and discomfort, which is completely normal and will gradually subside over time. To reduce swelling, wrap an ice pack in cloth and place it on the outside of your cheek for 10-15 minutes at a time. 

Your oral surgeon may also prescribe pain medication or suggest over-the-counter pain relievers to help alleviate any pain or swelling. It's important to follow their instructions and take the medication as directed.